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Local Man Seeks to Raise Awareness about Effects of Osteoporosis on Men

Most people think osteoporosis is a disease that only affects women, but it can be equally as debilitating for men.

Forty-one year old Michael Hickam was diagnosed with osteoporosis in 2003 but his problems with this disease started much earlier. KSMU's Joe Morgan has more.

According to St. John's Health System, osteoporosis is a disease that deteriorates bone tissue and causes the loss of bone mass that can lead to fractures. Michael Hickam was diagnosed with this disease in 2003 at the age of 38.

Hickam says that the signs of the disease were there from a very early age.

He says that after a string of broken bones, doctors finally decided to do significant bone density testing.

Doctors told Michael that he had a very low bone density which was causing the broken bones. They then told him that his disease was strictly hereditary and then Hickam says it all started to make sense.

Hickam says that he does physical therapy as well as other exercises to try and keep his bone density from dropping any lower. He says there needs to be more awareness about osteoporosis and the fact that it's equally as harmful to men as it is to women.

Tomorrow KSMU will bring you a sneak peak into a study at St. John's Health System in Springfield that follows men diagnosed with osteoporosis. Hickam has volunteered to participate in the study hoping for further knowledge on how to keep osteoporosis in check. For KSMU News, I'm Joe Morgan.